May. 29, 2020

covid-19 information

Family Law Matters Updated 5/11/2020

Remote Settlement Conferences
Beginning Monday, May 11th, the Court is offering settlement conferences through Zoom for Family Law matters Monday through Friday at 8:30am, 10:00 am, 1:30pm and 3:00pm. Parties may submit a request to set a settlement conference by email including all parties to settlements@napa.courts.ca.gov. To make a request please fill out and submit the fillable Request form found here.  Parties will provide on the form your preferred dates/times in order of preference, falling in a date range between 2-5 days from your request. Once a Request form is submitted by email, your matter will be scheduled and you will be emailed a confirmation with additional information including a Zoom link. (There will be an option for phone-in only for anyone lacking Zoom access, but video appearances are strongly encouraged). These settlement conferences will be offered only as long as time permits. Once we are able to resume hearings, hopefully in June, they will have to be discontinued, possibly abruptly, in order for us to deal with the press of other court business.

Family Law Filings
The Court is not currently processing non-urgent family law filings. Once filings are again being processed, the Court will accept the belated filing of documents that were due during the state of emergency and will delay the processing of default judgments for 60 days.

Beginning Monday, May 4, 2020, the Court will begin processing family law stipulations with proposed orders/judgments (this includes, without limitation, summary dissolutions, judgments with and without marital settlement agreements and default judgments).  These documents (and filing fees, if applicable) may be submitted through U.S. mail , the Court’s E-Filing system, or left in the Court’s drop box located in the lobby of the Criminal Court Building (1111 Third Street), which is accessible during court business hours.

 Case Management Conference Calendars & Filings
The Represented Case Management Conference (CMC) Calendar set for April 6, 2020 is continued to June 1, 2020. The May 4, 2020 Represented CMC Calendar is continued to July 6, 2020. The court clerk will mail notice of the continued hearings.

The Self-Represented CMC Calendar set for April 1, 2020 is continued to June 3, 2020 and the May 6, 2020 Self-Represented CMC Calendar is continued to July 1, 2020. The court clerk will mail notice of the continued hearings.

Monday Master Family Law and Wednesday Request for Order Calendars & Filings
Family law bench officers will exercise their discretion in continuing non-emergency Request for Order hearings currently set beginning, Monday, April 13, 2020 through and including, Friday May 29, 2020. The court clerk will notify the parties if their hearings are continued. For any hearings that go forward during this time, parties and counsel are strongly encouraged to appear telephonically.

Friday Child Support Calendar & Filings
The Court is working closely with the Napa County Department of Child Support Services to reschedule matters currently set on the Friday child support calendar through May 29, 2020. Unless the parties stipulate to a continuance, the court clerk will notify the parties of the continued hearing dates. It is possible that some matters may need to remain on calendar as scheduled to be heard on Fridays at 8:30 am in Department 2. 

Family Law Mediations
All family law mediations set beginning, Monday, April 13, 2020 through and including Friday, May 29, 2020 will be rescheduled. Family Court Services will contact the parties/counsel to reschedule mediations.

Guardianship Calendar
All guardianship hearings set in Department C beginning Monday, April 13, 2020 through and including Friday, May 29, 2020, will be continued eight weeks. Temporary guardianships previously granted will remain in full force and effect during this period. Notice will be sent to the parties and counsel. The Court will consider urgent guardianship applications as necessary through the ex parte procedure.

Adoptions
All adoption petitions and motions scheduled between Monday, April 13, 2020 and Friday, May 29, 2020, will be continued to a new date eight weeks from the currently set hearing date. Notice of the new hearing date will be provided by mail.

Restraining Orders: New Filings
New requests for violence/harassment-related restraining orders will be set for hearing as the Court’s calendar can accommodate, up to 90 days out, pursuant to Emergency Rule 8 of the Amendments to the California Rules of Court, adopted by the Judicial Council on April 6, 2020.

Restraining Orders: Calendar
All violence/harassment-related restraining order matters set for hearing beginning Monday, April 13, 2020 through and including Friday, May 29, 2020, will be continued on a rolling basis for four weeks from the currently scheduled hearing dates. Notice of the new hearing date will be provided by mail. Temporary restraining orders will remain in full force and effect through the new hearing date.

During the state of emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic, documents filed in connection with ex parte applications may be signed electronically by a party or a party’s attorney.

Ex Parte Applications Seeking Urgent Orders
The Court is now processing ex parte applications seeking urgent orders in all areas of law.  For applications unrelated to child custody and/or prevention of violence or harassment, the applicants must explain why they believe the matters require urgent setting during the COVID-19 state of emergency.  Any insufficiently urgent matters will be set at a later time, at the court’s discretion.  Pursuant to State rules, the Court will process ex parte applications in unlawful detainer matters and judicial foreclosure actions ONLY when the action is deemed necessary to protect public health and safety.

Ex parte applications may be filed through the Court’s E-Filing system or left in the Court’s drop box located in the lobby of the Criminal Court Building (1111 Third Street), which is accessible during court business hours. Ex parte applications must be received by 10:00 am to be processed the same day. By 3:00 p.m. each court day, an Ex Parte Status Information page will be posted on the court’s website at http://www.napa.courts.ca.gov indicating as to each matter filed by 10:00 a.m. that day, whether a decision has been made on the papers, or whether the matter will be placed on calendar for clarifying questions at 1:15 the following court day, or later at the court’s discretion.

Please note that the duration of temporary orders and setting of urgent hearings will be impacted by COVID-19 mitigation measures in accordance with State-issued emergency rules.

© 2020 Napa County Superior Court